How Much Does it Cost to Charge an Electric Car?

How Much Does it Cost to Charge an Electric Car?

Fact: The UK has more EV charging stations than petrol stations

Ditching petrol and plugging in can save you £140.00 a month, that’s nearly £2000.00 per year in your pocket!

The demand for electric vehicles is rising dramatically in the UK. The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) announced that Electric vehicle registrations were up by 197.4 per cent year-on-year in March. What’s the bottom line though when it comes to cost?

Charging your car using green energy even increases the electric cars green credentials. But is there a cost-benefit too? How much cheaper is an electric vehicle to run compared to petrol? How much does it cost to charge an Electric Car?

The number of electric vehicle (EV) charge points at supermarkets has doubled in the last two years,

The number of electric vehicle (EV) charge points at supermarkets has doubled in the last two years,

How Much Does It Cost to Charge an Electric Car?

Like cooking for yourself at home is cheaper than eating out, so is charging your electric car. Which model you own and who is providing the electricity will have an impact on the cost to charge, but there is a simple equation you can use:

Take the capacity of the battery the car expressed in kilowatt-hours (KwH) and multiply it by what your electricity supplier charges you for the electricity.

kWh x Pence per kWh = Cost to charge from empty to full capacity.

For example, let us take one of the most popular electric cars, the Nissan LEAF, with a 40kWh battery. If we multiply 40 x 14.4 pence (the average price of electricity in the UK) the total cost for a full charge will be £5.76. And for a Tesla Model S with a 100 kWh battery that would be c.£14.40.

There are a few things to consider when home charging:

  • Check with your electricity provider to see if you can save even more money can by charging at night – off-peak.
  • You can charge your car from a regular socket. Still, it’s advisable to install a home charge point using the OLEV (Office for low emission vehicles) grant for around £500.00 and charge up to 3x faster.
  • You should also check if your property has any electrical load restrictions. You may find that your property won’t support 7 kWh of additional load meaning you will need to charge at 3 kWh and could cost you more.

How much does it cost to charge an electric car when out and about?

There have been some concerns about the lack of public charging points in the past. Research has shown most electric car owners charge at home, and most car journeys in the UK are less than fifty miles, so this is rarely an issue. And with electric car battery ranges increasing with every new release, public charging should only be required in an emergency or when needed on a long-distance journey.

There are public charging points that are FREE! Places like supermarkets will often have free charging points as an incentive to go there, and you can charge up while shopping, so they are super convenient.

The amount of public charging points is still increasing exponentially, and there are also supercharger forecourts with cafes, work stations and supermarkets planned across the country. Even whole streets are being converted with lamp posts now ready to charge electric cars!

Zap-Map can help you locate more than 18,000 charge points across the UK. Most modern charging networks will offer you a free to download App, which can also help you find charge points and have charge tariffs set by the host so the costs can vary.

Rapid chargers are typically a little more expensive as they charge your car much faster, circa 100 miles of range in 30 minutes or so. For example, Pod Points rapid chargers at Lidl cost 23p/kWh which equates to around £6.00 – £7.00 for 30 minutes of charging.

The bottom line

Fuel cost comparison FORD FIESTA (Petrol) Vs NISSAN LEAF E+ (Electric)

2020 FORD FIESTA (Petrol) 2020 NISSAN LEAF E+ (Electric)
10,000 miles = c.37 trips to the petrol station 10,000 miles = c.42 overnight charges at home
Average cost of petrol = £1.31 per litre Average cost of Electricity = £0.14p per kWh
Cost to fill up = £56.33 Cost to fill up = £8.68
29mpg / 6.38 miles per litre 3.85 Miles per KwH
Fuel tank capacity = 43 litres Battery capacity = 62kw
Range = 274.34 miles Range = 239 miles
£2084 p/10,000 miles = £363 p/10,000 miles

If we compare the UK’s best-selling car of 2019 the FORD Fiesta with its 43-litre capacity fuel tank that will give you around 29mpg X £1.31 per litre of fuel costs around £2084 in fuel over 10,000 miles. Whereas a typical electric car (such as a 2020 Nissan Leaf+E) with a 62Kw engine costing £8.68 for a full charge at home (14 p/kWh) has a range of 239 miles and would cost around £363 in electricity over 10,000 miles. That’s a saving of over £1700 per year, or £140,00 a month more in your pocket.

The bottom line is, Electric Cars just make sense!


About the author

David is the founder of The EV Market Place which was launched to align his passion for Cars, Motorbikes, Boats, Bikes, Travel and the Environment.

The EV Market Place is a dedicated platform where you can buy and sell Electric Vehicles with ease and help save the planet & humanity at the same time. All profits from the listings are donated to global environmental and humanitarian charities.

Prior to launching The EV Market Place he gained his experience working for more than twenty-five award-winning advertising and integrated marketing communication agencies and continues to work with brands and creative agencies worldwide.

David on Linkedin.